The Boston Bruins’ 12-game home-ice win streak was snapped as the visiting Florida Panthers prevailed 4-1 on Saturday afternoon.
Boston’s streak was the longest for the Bruins since 2008-2009. This was the first Bruins’ home loss since Jan. 31.
But other than streaks and stats, the game didn’t have much meaning given that Boston has already clinched a playoff berth, and the Panthers — playing their last road contest of the season — are officially out of contention.
Riley Sheahan and Troy Brouwer scored once and Evgenii Dadonov scored twice, including an empty-netter, for the Panthers, and Roberto Luongo earned the win by making 30 saves. Brouwer’s goal — his second in two games — was just Florida’s second short-handed score of the season.
Panthers winger Jonathan Huberdeau added two assists and passed Scott Mellanby for third place on the franchise list with 355 career points.
Dadonov has 28 goals this season, tying his career high. He has 19 points in his past 13 games and leads the Panthers with 42 even-strength goals over the past two seasons.
Noel Acciari scored for Boston and Tuukka Rask took the loss, making 19 saves. But Florida shut down Brad Marchand, who is three points away from what would be Boston’s first 100-point season since Joe Thornton in 2002-2003.
Florida got off to a strong start, getting both of the goals scored in an odd first period.
Boston had a 12-2 shots advantage when the Panthers got on the board 1-0 with 6:23 left in the first period. A Panthers power play had expired a split-second before Dryden Hunt’s wrist shot pinballed off a Bruins defender before caroming in off Sheahan.
Florida made it 2-0 with 4:16 remaining in the first. Aleksander Barkov started the sequence with a steal. Jonathan Huberdeau fed Aaron Ekblad for a shot, and Dadonov cleaned up the rebound to give the Panthers a 2-0 lead despite getting outshot 16-8 in the period.
Boston got on the board with 6:48 left in the second as Acciari whipped around to whack in a rebound off his backhand.
But Florida went ahead 3-1 on Brouwer’s short-handed goal just 67 seconds later. Panthers defenseman Mike Matheson cleared the puck, and Brouwer chased it down, faking a slapshot with his first touch and then ringing in a wrister off the left post.
Dadonov’s empty-net goal with 2:21 left iced the game.